Isle of Wight politicians defend care home workers from Government’s ‘attempt to shift blame’ for spread of Covid-19 (updated)

Spokespeople from Labour, Green and LibDem parties share their views on the Prime Minister’s comments about the spread of Covid-19 in care homes. News OnTheWight asked Bob Seely his views too

Boris Johnson

On Monday Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, came under fire for attempting to blame care home owners for up to 20,000 deaths through not “follow[ing]  procedures”.

Over the last three months the Government has come under attack many times for failing to support care homes during the Coronavirus crisis.

Critchley: Shifting blame for his own Government’s disastrous handling
Chair of Island Labour, Julian Critchley, told News OnTheWight,

“This is a disgraceful attempt to shift blame for his own Government’s disastrous handling of the pandemic.

“Isle of Wight care workers have worked night and day throughout this period to try and protect and provide for their residents. They’ve had to manage this despite repeated Government failures such as the shortage of PPE, non-existent guidance and catastrophic decision-making which saw untested people moved from hospitals into care homes.

“For Johnson to try to blame those workers for his own incompetence is an appalling, cynical abdication of responsibility.

“Island Labour applauds all our care home workers on the Island, and thanks them for everything they did to care for their residents in the face of Government incompetence and indifference.”

Lowthion: PM’s statement says more about sort of man he is
Vix Lowthion from the Isle of Wight Green Party told News OnTheWight,

“Boris Johnson continues to point the finger of blame for overseeing one of the worst covid19 death rates in the world, at anyone but his own Government.

“If schools can only admit limited pupils due to safety considerations, it’s the fault of the teachers.

“If the streets are full of revellers as Government encourage drinking in the middle of a pandemic, then it’s the fault of the public.

“But, worse of all, to blame the care workers – many of whom lost their very lives – for failing to take enough precautions and spread the virus?

“Outrageous. Our care workers, our NHS, our key workers have protected and saved countless lives in the last few months, and will do so again.
Boris Johnson’s statement says more about the sort of man he is, than it tells us anything about the true picture in our care homes during this crisis.”

Stuart: It’s shifty, mean and shameful
Leader of the Isle of Wight Liberal Democrats, Nick Stuart, told News OnTheWight,

“Johnson needs to take responsibility and stop blaming others for his Government’s disasters. Trying to shift the blame onto underfunded care homes and some of the poorest paid and at risk staff is shifty, mean and shameful.

“The failure to support and protect care homes was lamentable. While the refusal to tell us infection numbers and casualties make his contempt for the public clear. 

“The result of Govt failings on infected patients and protective equipment hit our most  vulnerable people and is a stain on a civilised rich society. And don’t get me going on the late and feeble  testing and tracing efforts. 

“We would have fewer deaths if the Government had actually listened to critics in the medical and academic professions. Following the guidance of arrogant advisors and their own self belief doesn’t change the science. This virus doesn’t do politics it’s a disease!

“The lies about a so-called protective shield and now this transparent blaming others is a sign of Government losing the plot. I wonder who else they will find to blame for their mistakes?”

Seely: There will need to be a period of time for reflection
News OnTheWight asked Isle of Wight Conservative MP, Bob Seely whether he agreed with the statement made by the PM, and what his view was on the long delay before the Government agreed all patients should be tested for C19 before going into care homes?

He avoided answering the questions and instead replied,

“I have been in contact with representatives from the care sector on the Isle of Wight throughout the Covid-19 pandemic and I have visited care home staff. As far as I can see, care staff here have done their absolute best and often gone above and beyond their duties in the hardest of times. I think we should all recognise and congratulate them for their efforts.

“It’s clear that there will need to be a period of time for reflection where consideration is taken to review whether anything could have been done differently. That is all part of the learning process for how we improve in the future. 

“I thank the care sector for all that they have done and continue to do.”

Article edit
8.30am 8th July 2020 – Added, “He avoided answering the questions”

Image: eu2017ee under CC BY 2.0

Tuesday, 7th July, 2020 1:16pm



Filed under: Island-wide, Isle of Wight News, Top story

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12 Comments on "Isle of Wight politicians defend care home workers from Government’s ‘attempt to shift blame’ for spread of Covid-19 (updated)"

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Alternative Perspective
The vulnerabilities of care homes was well understood by government long before the Coronavirus pandemic. The Cygnus Exercise highlighted this issue. There needs to be a public enquiry as to why the Government chose to sacrificed care homes, and those in care homes, low paid staff and elderly residents, in a bid to protect our chronically under resourced NHS, which the government, after years of cut backs,… Read more »
Bob Seely says, ‘lt’s clear that there will need to be a period of time for reflection where consideration is taken to review whether anything could have been done differently. That is all part of the learning process for how we improve in the future’ Too right chum! The Country need to rid itself of these despicable, evil self serving Conservatives, that are a total disgrace to… Read more »
I don’t think the Tory’s care a jot about care homes, or those in them. After all what’s at risk? Just low paid, largely immigrant staff, and residents who are no longer economically productive, and who are a costly liability to the state and NHS, particularly if they have multiple medical conditions. The decision would have been taken ignore the dangers for care homes, indeed, to exacerbate… Read more »
Jenny Smart

Bob, you might like to quietly reflect upon of the thousands and thousands of deaths your incompetence political party are responsible for, and the thousands and thousands of people who have not fully recovered, and now face a lifetime of ongoing medical complications.

Then consider why you, and your colleagues, should be trusted with governing the Country.

This is just appalling! It was a government directive to discharge elderly patients from hospitals into Nursing + Care homes without them being tested for Covid 19! These homes were also ‘advised’ not to send any of their residents to hospital if they were showing symptoms of Covid 19 as they would not be treated! What care home staff were you visiting Sausage Seely? You do realise… Read more »

Reflection, Bob? Let us know how that goes. It may lead us to conclude that a new breed of vampires were running the show…

I think in our heart of hearts we all know where Conservatives stand when it comes to caring, I mean, just look at Grenfell tower 3 years on, how many tower blocks have had their highly inflammable gentrified cladding removed? Tory’s simply don’t care if another similar event happens, after all its likely to be poor people in high rise buildings that are going to burn to… Read more »
Anyone remember we had an enquiry into Russian involvement in the referendum. FOUR YEARS AGO. The enquiry report has been available for SEVEN MONTHS . But curiously hasn’t seen the light of day. And since then two elections where Russians for some reason found the Tory party so attractive they pumped millions into it. STILL NO REPORT. So why on earth would we expect anything from the… Read more »

Boris Johnson prefers slogans to strategy so perhaps he’d like this one. “Care workers; Clap not slap”

Angela Hewitt

Boris Johnson’s slogan would be “slap not clap”

Mike Starke
Bob, pay attention. Your response to News OnTheWight looks like the answer to something you were not asked. Now, be a good boy and eat up the other half of your BBQ sausage, wash your hands for 20 seconds and read the NOTW question again. It’s only in two parts. It’s eye-wateringly simple to understand and we, your constituents, are dying to have a proper answer. Otherwise,… Read more »
A medic’s perspective on the catastrophe — published in Australia, but the doctor in question is London-based and this is about the UK. I’ve pasted in an excerpt. The link to the full article: Claims by both Downing Street and Public Health England that they “got it right” cannot be allowed to stand… A COVID cardiologist at a top London hospital – friendly to Boris –… Read more »